In an apparent attempt to end his 75-day holdout, Tampa Bay wide receiver Keenan McCardell flew to Tampa on Monday to meet with Buccaneers head coach Jon Gruden.
While both men met and talked about McCardell’s situation, no progress was made, which prompted McCardell to fly back to his Houston home later that night and continue his holdout.
“While I have not changed my feelings or intentions concerning my situation, I decided to fly into town to personally meet with Coach Gruden in an effort to come to a mutually beneficial resolution to my holdout, whether by trade or otherwise,” McCardell said in a statement released to the Tampa Tribune. “We both aired our views concerning the situation. Unfortunately, nothing was resolved, so I will return to Houston to continue my holdout.”
McCardell, who caught a team-high 84 passes for 1,174 yards and scored a career-high nine touchdowns en route to earning a trip to the Pro Bowl in 2003, was scheduled to earn $2.5 million this season before he opted to hold out for a new contract that would pay him like the team’s number one receiver, which would would call for approximately a $2 million annual salary increase.
Despite having a depleted group of wide receivers, the 1-4 Bucs have refused to negotiate with McCardell, citing the fact that he’s one of the NFL’s highest-paid 34-year-old receivers and has two years remaining on the contract he signed as a free agent back in 2002.
“This holdout has been about Keenan wanting more money,” said Bucs general manager Bruce Allen. “We have consistently denied that request.”
McCardell has missed the first five games of the 2004 regular season, which amounts to a loss of about $750,000 in game checks. McCardell has accumulated approximately $375,000 in daily fines since his holdout officially began on July 30.
Did you like this article? Want more inside scoop on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers? Click here to become a Pewter Insider today and know about Bucs news before it happens. uccaneers merchandise in the world.